Sunday, 12 April 2015

Pistachio Dining - Torrens' hidden gem

I just love that top class restaurants are scattered all over Canberra. Not just confined to major hotels, or foodie 'precincts', but they are also nestled in the suburbs. They are 'go to' places for families celebrating birthdays, graduations, catch ups, intimate dates. Its where the staff come to know you by name. They are the alternative to having to cook at home, and just the spot when you want to entertain.. without all the washing up. 

My recent outing had a two-fold reason. 
1. A friend's fiance was in town, and it was a great opportunity for a bunch of us to catch up, and
2. We had a 'killa' bottle of Clonakilla 2009 Shiraz Viognier rattling about in the pantry (as you do), just begging to be opened and shared. 

So, I tweeted a question out to the Canberra foodie sages, asking where was a good place to go that would do my Clonakilla justice. Thanks go to Richard Tuffin who recommended Pistachio Dining at the Torrens shops, and it didn't disappoint. The first thing you notice when walking into the restaurant is the size of it. Its a decent size space, but the tables and chairs have been spaced out, to give a relaxed feel. You don't feel crammed in at all. There are warm tones on the walls, nice dark carpet, dark furniture and candles on the tables. Oh, and complimentary pistachios of course to nibble. 

Days before I went, I studied the menu - as you do. Intrigued by a menu item called "Just Feed Me Please", which is a chef's selection of 4 courses (two entrees, a main, and a dessert) all for a mere $65. "Leave it up to Dave to choose your meal for you".  Being the adventurous foodie types, we opted for this, and left our dining in the hands of "Dave" being the chef David Keeley. Have a read of Dave's bio, to gain an understanding of how much cred he has tucked under his chef's belt. Aubergine, Sabayon, Courgette to name but a few. You get my drift.. this guy knows food, and knows how to run a restaurant.

Our Clonakilla was right at home here. On the menu, the wines are selected from the Canberra region, so another great reason to visit Pistachio Dining. 

Now, over to "Dave" and his chef's selection...

Our first entree consisted of two beautifully cooked scallops (yes they actually were 'cooked to perfection') sitting atop a wedge of pan fried chorizo. Tasty, with just a little heat from the chorizo, it was a great starter. 

Second entree was a lovely piece of salmon, pink in the middle but with fair dinkum wafer crunchy skin on a bed of shredded seaweed, asparagus, sesame seeds and a sweet soy based sauce. The salmon was delicate and the seaweed was salty and crunchy. 

Next up was the main. When we ordered, I asked if Dave could do us something that would pair well with the Shiraz. He didn't disappoint when this medium rare beef fillet dish arrived, on a warm tablet of slate. 

Of course, the Clonakilla. Shared between four red drinkers, we could have finished off another bottle, alas I had brought only the one. 

Final course for the night was dessert.  A bread and butter pudding with Bailey's ice cream, and pieces of banana that had been brulee'd. So good, that my friend ordered another serve, to which the staff obliged, and was surprisingly gratis. 

Lovely dinner, lovely restaurant, and great value for money. Leave it up to Dave to decide your meal and you won't be disappointed. 

Shop 3A, Torrens Place
Ph 6286 2966

1 comment:

  1. Have only heard good things about Pistachio Dining... must try it sometime.